Premier League Preview: Tottenham v Sunderland
By Football News
Emmanuel Adebayor could cap off an amazing transformation on Sundayunday as he looks to be the key to Tottenham's UEFA Champions League bid.
Tottenham will host Sunderland at White Hart Lane on the final day of the 2012-13 Premier League, knowing victory is their only option if they are to qualify for next season's UEFA Champions League ahead of arch-rivals Arsenal.
With 90 minutes remaining in this campaign, Tottenham sit fifth in the table with 69 points and plus 19 goal difference, while Arsenal (70 points, plus 34) hold fourth spot and its accompanying berth in the qualifying stages of the 2013-14 UEFA Champions League.
Tottenham must defeat 17th-placed Sunderland on Sunday and hope Arsenal fail to win away to Newcastle United if they are to claim fourth position and, surprisingly, Adebayor may be the main man for manager Andre Villas-Boas.
The 29-year-old Togolese striker has generally been a target of scorn for Tottenham fans this season as they have ripped into Adebayor for his lack of endeavour and goals.
While Adebayor was brilliant for Tottenham during Harry Redknapp's tenure, scoring 18 goals last season, the striker has only hit the back of the net eight times under Villas-Boas.
But in a fantastic finish to his season, Adebayor has scored five of those goals in Tottenham's past 10 matches in all competitions, including one in each of the past two games.
Adebayor scored a brilliant solo goal in his side's 2-2 draw with Chelsea on May 7 before setting up the decisive equaliser, while the former Arsenal forward struck the winner last week in Tottenham's 2-1 victory away to Stoke.
Tottenham have not lost in seven Premier League games, including three draws, but cannot afford anything less than a win against Sunderland, who have little to play for this weekend after Wigan were relegated on Tuesday.
In a bonus for Villas-Boas, Sunderland manager Paolo di Canio will have to do without Benin international Stephane Sessegnon, who was sent off in last week's 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Aston Villa.
Villas-Boas should also take confidence from Sunderland's away form, as Di Canio's side have picked up just three points from their past six Premier League games on the road.